Anat Ebgi opened her gallery in L.A. in 2012. Since then, she’s put forth a program showcasing an international dialogue among emerging talents. The gallery recently completed a year of exhibitions devoted to female artists, and that focus has led Ebgi to seek out an even more diverse roster that includes queer artists and artists of color.
This January during Art Los Angeles Contemporary, Anat Ebgi will present Caroline Walker’s large-scale paintings in “Sunset.” Whitewaller spoke with the gallerist about the collector scene in L.A. and what will be in her booth at ALAC.
WHITEWALLER: Can you tell us about the show of work by Caroline Walker that will be on view this January at the gallery?
ANAT EBGI: Oh wow, I am so excited for Caroline Walker’s show! This will be her first U.S. solo exhibition, and I am honored to be presenting it here in Los Angeles. The show, “Sunset,” is a selection of large-scale paintings and a few smaller works whose subject matter is a day in the life of an aging beauty queen (Miss Colorado 1977) and her isolated activities in and around a midcentury home. It’s quite extraordinary how Caroline captures the light and mood of L.A. for someone who lives and works in London. I see her paintings in my mind when I drive around the Hollywood Hills at dusk.
WW: You’ve described the gallery as a space for an international dialogue between younger artists and an international audience. How has that conversation been evolving?
AE: The art world is more intimate since everyone is now on social media; artists from around the world seem closer than ever. We’ve done a lot of international art fairs in the past, but in 2017 we focused on staying closer to home, deepening our connections with the U.S. and Canada. However, many of the artists have gone on to participate in gallery and museum shows around the world.
WW: Are you seeing a younger collector base coming up in Los Angeles?
AE: Absolutely. The young collectors in L.A. are part of makes this city so exciting. They are knowledgeable, inspired, and involved in the careers of artists, and support many of the galleries new and old. They are not afraid to take risks, and no longer do artists need to “make it” in New York City or Europe in order to be paid attention to in L.A.
WW: Last year, you presented a yearlong female-driven program. What was the overall reaction from that kind of focused exhibition schedule? How did that affect the programming that came next?
AE: A year of women artists was too short! I hope to do that again, where I don’t have to think about it, it just happens that majority of shows are with women artists. It actually made us actively seek to diversify the roster by including more queer artists and artists of color.
WW: What will you be presenting at Art Los Angeles Contemporary this year?
AE: The plan is to present a selection of new works by gallery artists. Since it’s our home fair, I usually get a clear vision about two weeks before install. Last year I was deeply depressed by the election; I wanted the booth to express the collective mood. I turned to Picasso’s Guernica for inspiration, and our booth had no color, just gray scale.
WW: Outside of the fairs in January, what should visitors in L.A. be sure to check out?
AE: The show I’m excited to see is “Stories of Almost Everyone” opening at the Hammer Museum, curated by Aram Mosheyedi. And if there is extra time after all the galleries and museums, visit Descanso Gardens in La Cañada Flintridge.